Server Protocol X-Window System
(also known as X11)
(also includes a compatibility layer for running X11 client programs)
Running OS Windows Linux
Each WSL2 distro has a separate Linux virtual machine for running WSLg
Architecture Overview
Requires running RDP client No Yes
Automatically creating Linux GUI app shortcuts No Yes
High-DPI Display Yes Yes
GPU accelerated OpenGL Yes Yes
Running full Linux GUI desktop environments Yes No
X11 forwarding over SSH to Windows Any SSH client regardless of where it's running; Windows, WSL2, Hyper-V virtual machines or etc. Only SSH clients running in WSL2
Can be shared among WSL distros? Yes No
Can be used with other virtual machines (ex. Docker Desktop for Windows)? Yes No
Can be restarted without completely shutting down WSL? Yes No

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